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date – date_create_from_format equivalent for PHP 5.2 (or lower)

Posted by: admin July 12, 2020 Leave a comment


I’m working with PHP 5.3 on my local machine and needed to parse a UK date format (dd/mm/yyyy). I found that strtotime didn’t work with that date format, so I used date_create_from_format instead – which works great.

Now, my problem is that my staging server is running PHP 5.2, and date_create_from_format doesn’t work on that version. (It’s a shared server, and wouldn’t have a clue how to upgrade it to PHP 5.3)

So is there a similar function to date_create_from_format that I can use? Bespoke or PHP native?

How to&Answers:

If strptime is not available to you, then here is a different idea. It is similar to Col. Shrapnel’s approach but instead uses sscanf to parse the date-part values into variables and uses those to construct a new DateTime object.

list($day, $month, $year) = sscanf('12/04/2010', '%02d/%02d/%04d');
$datetime = new DateTime("$year-$month-$day");
echo $datetime->format('r');


Try strptime() which is available in PHP 5.1 and above.


include this code:

function DEFINE_date_create_from_format()

  function date_create_from_format( $dformat, $dvalue )

    $schedule = $dvalue;
    $schedule_format = str_replace(array('Y','m','d', 'H', 'i','a'),array('%Y','%m','%d', '%I', '%M', '%p' ) ,$dformat);
    // %Y, %m and %d correspond to date()'s Y m and d.
    // %I corresponds to H, %M to i and %p to a
    $ugly = strptime($schedule, $schedule_format);
    $ymd = sprintf(
        // This is a format string that takes six total decimal
        // arguments, then left-pads them with zeros to either
        // 4 or 2 characters, as needed
        '%04d-%02d-%02d %02d:%02d:%02d',
        $ugly['tm_year'] + 1900,  // This will be "111", so we need to add 1900.
        $ugly['tm_mon'] + 1,      // This will be the month minus one, so we add one.
    $new_schedule = new DateTime($ymd);

   return $new_schedule;


if( !function_exists("date_create_from_format") )


If you need to parse only one particular format, it’s elementary string operation.



use format DD-MM-YY and timestamp, I think it will be easier for you

$dateConvert=date('d-m-Y', $timestamp);
echo $dateConvert;

I’ve used it